Projector Reviews

Home Theater Projectors $1000 to $2000 (Smart)

There are many projector options under $2000 that do a really great job on bright and average lit scenes, as good as many significantly more expensive projectors. But the differences on very dark scenes are where you start seeing the real difference. If a sharp picture is more important to you than achieving excellent black levels, you should be able to find a projector within this price range that could work for you.

ViewSonic X10-4KE

ViewSonic-X10-4KE

Projector Specs

Specification Description
Price $1,499
Technology 3 Chip DLP
Native Resolution 3840×2160
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 2400 Lumens
Zoom Lens Ratio fixed focal lens
Lens Shift No
Lamp Life 30,000 Hours
Weight 9 lbs.
Warranty 3 Year Limited Warranty, 1 Year on Light Source + 1st Year Free Express Exchange® Service When Registered

Projector Overview

The ViewSonic X10-4KE takes the big screen experience, makes it portable, and gives it a handle. Add to that the 4K UHD resolution (3840 x 2160), short throw design and smart TV capabilities, you’ve got a highly versatile, portable home theater. The X10-4KE combines the very best of home entertainment and packages it into a super compact form, measuring just 10.3” wide, 10.7” deep, 6.5” tall, and weighing 9lbs.

This is a compact projector made even more portable by its handle. The projector is a sleek, matte gray with brown leather accents, making the X10-4KE look retro with a modern touch. That handle’s top is lined with a classy strip of leather, its color reminiscent of a briefcase from the late 60s. Even cooler, the inputs are hidden by a leather door that flaps down to reveal a simple connector panel that has everything you require for your home entertainment needs.

The ViewSonic X10-4KE has a 2,400 lumen claim, which is bright enough for most living rooms, media rooms, and family rooms with decent lighting control. This is not a bright room projector, but it is capable of handling a modest amount of ambient light without the picture being severely washed out.

Since this is a super portable projector, you may find yourself taking it outside for a movie night when the weather warms up! This ViewSonic has built-in Harman Kardon speakers for great onboard sound, or you can hook up your favorite Bluetooth speaker or sound bar.

The most notable features of this projector are:

  • Amazon Alexa + Google Assistant – The ViewSonic X10-4KE is compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant. Setup is simple. You create an account with the ViewSonic Remote App, then link your Alexa or Google Assistant account to use voice control functions.
  • Auto-Focus and Auto Keystoning -When you power on the projector, it automatically focuses and adjusts keystone so that your projected image is perfectly rectangular. This is particularly useful when the projector is set on a low surface, projecting upward.
  • On-Board Media Player – The on-board media player allows you to playback movies, images, music, and podcasts via a Micro SD card. You can also store these files using the File Management System, accessible via the Home Menu that appears when you power on the projector. The X10-4KE has 16gb of internal storage, so there’s plenty of room for you to store your favorite movies.
  • CFI – The ViewSonic X10-4KE has CFI – Creative Frame Interpolation – for Smooth Motion. This is popular for sports viewing, as it adds extra frames to make the image seem more lifelike.

In summary, the ViewSonic X10-4KE is a portable, 4K UHD resolution (3840 x 2160), short throw smart projector with a unique design, with a retro look, and a stylish handle. The projector is compatible with both Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, and has a wide range of commands to make the projector all the more convenient. It is capable of pretty good color and bright enough to handle a pretty good amount of ambient light.

LG HU70LA

LG-HU70LA

Projector Specs

Specification Description
Price $1,799
Technology DLP
Native Resolution 3840×2160
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 1500
Contrast 150,000:1
Zoom Lens Ratio 1.25:1
Lens Shift No
Lamp Life 30,000 hours
Weight 7.1 lbs
Warranty 1 Year

Projector Overview

The LG HU70LA is an HDR compatible DLP home theater LED projector which utilizes a single DLP (0.47” DMD) chip to reproduce 4K UHD resolution (3,840 x 2,160). The HU70LA’s 4ch LED light engine is rated to deliver at 1,500 lumens for up to 30,000 hours.

The HU70LA is part of the LG CineBeam lineup of projectors which are designed to make front projection more accessible and appealing to a wider range of consumers. LG’s goal was to build a line of projectors that could replace a TV in an environment where a large TV just won’t fit.

Since the HU70LA is designed to serve as a TV replacement, it includes most of the features that consumers expect in a flat panel TV including a TV tuner, internal speakers, and of course smart features.

To make the HU70LA as Smart as possible, LG utilizes the same ThinQ AI webOS that is offered in their lineup of Smart flat panel TVs. Like their Smart TVs, the HL70LA can be voice controlled and offers a wide variety of apps. Since it is a DLP projector with a LED light engine, it also delivers years of the maintenance free operation like a flat panel.

The most notable features of this projector are:

  • 4 Channel LED Light Engine – Most Laser/LED projectors rely on phosphors to create green color elements and sometimes red (if it only has a blue lasers) but the LG HU70LA uses four LEDs to generate red, green, and blue, with an addition of a fourth blue LED to boost brightness, contrast, and generate more vivid colors.
  • 4K DLP – The HU70LA utilizes a Texas Instruments 2nd generation DLP (0.47” DMD) chip to reproduce perceived 4K UHD (3,840 x 2,160) resolution. It is “perceived” because a 4K DLP chip does not actually have 8.3 million mirrors, so the projector utilizes pixel (mirror) shifting to deliver the perceived sharpness of native 4K, which works very well.
  • Smart TV Features – The HU70LA utilizes the same ThinQ AI webOS that is found in LG’s current flat panel lineup. It’s a Smart projector made by a Smart TV manufacturer.
  • HDR10 with Auto Tone Mapping – The HDR provides a major improvement in dynamic range as well as color. It lets you see more detail in the shadows and the bright areas and delivers more saturated lifelike colors.

Great picture, smart features, and low maintenance make the HU70LA a compelling alternative to a large flat panel TV especially in room where space is at a premium.

Projector Reviews in Progress

We are seeing several really great Smart projectors being manufactured in the $1000 – $2000 category. Over the next few months, we will be reviewing several projectors that fall into this category. Our goal is to provide our readers with all the information needed to make an educated decision in this growing, and increasingly popular category.

Below is a list of Smart projector models between $1000 – $2000 that the Projector Reviews team is currently evaluating. Over the year, we will continue to update this section as the reviews are finalized.

BenQ X1300i

BenQ-X1300i

Projector Specs

Specification Description
Price $1,299
Technology DLP
Native Resolution 1920×1080
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 3000
Contrast 500,000:1
Zoom Lens Ratio 1.2x
Lens Shift No
Lamp Life 20,000 hours
Weight 6.4 lbs
Warranty Yes

A product we’re excited to review, once it is released, is BenQ’s upcoming x1300i gaming projector, which has several features designed to capitalize on the storytelling aspect of the games we love and translates that into useful features to improve gameplay. The core premise of taking a fresh look at gaming projectors is that it’s not just about making the games easier to play, it’s about elevating the most exciting parts of the game using projectors to highlight those details.

An aspect we’re excited to test in further detail is going to be the various Game Modes that the new BenQ gaming projectors are said to offer. The idea of a ‘game mode’ actually doesn’t sound like a very novel idea on its face, but after learning more about the unique approach taken by the group at BenQ, we had our curiosity piqued. There are a few different types of common gameplay, first-person shooter, role playing, and sports games. To take advantage of the specific needs of each of these styles of gameplay, BenQ has created four different gameplay modes, developed for each specific style of play.

The BenQ X1300i is, as the manufacturer claims, the World’s first 4LED gaming projector with cinematic experience. It offers 3000 Lumens and HDR game compatibility. Because this projector is really catering to the gamers who are looking to take their play to the next level, it offers several options to support an enhanced game play experience and we are looking forward to giving it a try!

BenQ TK850i

BenQ-TK850i

Projector Specs

Specification Description
Price $1599
Technology DLP
Native Resolution 3840×2160
Brightness (Manufacturer Claim) 3000
Contrast 30,000:1
Zoom Lens Ratio 1.3x
Lens Shift Yes
Lamp Life 4,000 hours
Weight 9.2 lbs
Warranty Yes

This soon-to-be-released 4K HDR, high brightness projector offers true 4K UHD resolution with 8.3M pixels and 3000 Lumens of brightness (manufacturer claimed) and we are really looking forward to providing you with our impression of this projector.

This Smart home projector is powered by Android TV, making it easy to access all your content with the touch of a button or even using voice commands.

The TK850i offers a very bright picture, which is good for rooms with a good deal of ambient lighting. If you are a fan of watching sports, BenQ offers dedicated Sports Mode which enhances the picture quality making skin tones more realistic and balance the blues and greens to sharpen playing fields. In addition, they are offering a Motion Enhancer to make for a more seamless and crisp 60 frames per second display.

In addition to the picture, this projector is equipped with a 1-watt chambered speaker.